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David Bowie

(1947-2016), Singer, songwriter, performer and actor

Sitter in 16 portraits
Known as the chameleon of pop for his ever-changing appearance, futuristic costumes and outlandish makeup, Bowie was born David Jones in Brixton, London. He released his first album in 1967 and gained wide recognition two years later with his single Space Oddity, which coincided with the first moon landing. Albums such as Hunky Dory (1971), Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars (1972), Aladdin Sane (1973) and Diamond Dogs (1974) made him an international star. His film roles included the lead in The Man Who Fell to Earth (1976), Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence (1983) and Andy Warhol in Basquiat (1996). Bowie's final album Blackstar was released on his 69th birthday, 8 January 2016.

Watch a film clip on the sitter from the BBC Archive in the Media section below

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David Bowie, by Stephen Finer - NPG 6336

David Bowie

by Stephen Finer
oil on canvas, 1994
NPG 6336

David Bowie, by Steven Klein - NPG P1277

David Bowie

by Steven Klein
C-type colour print, 2003
NPG P1277

David Bowie, by David Wedgbury - NPG x47344

David Bowie

by David Wedgbury
resin print, 1966
NPG x47344

David Bowie, by David Bebbington - NPG x133099

David Bowie

by David Bebbington
fibre based lambda print, August 1969
NPG x133099

David Bowie, by David Bebbington - NPG x133100

David Bowie

by David Bebbington
fibre based lambda print, August 1969
NPG x133100

David Bowie, by David Bebbington - NPG x133101

David Bowie

by David Bebbington
fibre based lambda print, 16 August 1969
NPG x133101

David Bowie, by David Bebbington - NPG x135753

David Bowie

by David Bebbington
C-type colour print, 1969
NPG x135753

David Bowie, by Terry O'Neill - NPG x126130

David Bowie

by Terry O'Neill
bromide fibre print, 1974
NPG x126130

David Bowie; Dame Elizabeth Taylor, by Terry O'Neill - NPG x88495

David Bowie; Dame Elizabeth Taylor

by Terry O'Neill
bromide print, 1975
NPG x88495

David Bowie, by Terry O'Neill - NPG x34560

David Bowie

by Terry O'Neill
bromide print, 1975
NPG x34560

David Bowie, by Derry Moore, 12th Earl of Drogheda - NPG x126970

David Bowie

by Derry Moore, 12th Earl of Drogheda
C-type colour print, 1992
NPG x126970

David Bowie, by Fergus Greer - NPG x126882

David Bowie

by Fergus Greer
bromide fibre print, 2001
NPG x126882

Image currently unavailable owing to copyright restrictions

David Bowie

by Michael David ('Mick') Rock
C-type colour print, March 1972
NPG P755

Image currently unavailable owing to copyright restrictions

David Bowie

by Lord Snowdon
gelatin silver print, 1978
NPG P1855

Image currently unavailable owing to copyright restrictions

David Bowie

by Brian Duffy
K3 Ultrachrome print on Fuji Baryte Gloss paper, 1973
On display in Room 37 at the National Portrait Gallery
NPG x137463

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